Multiple agencies search for missing boater along Ventura coast staff via KABC logo
Sunday, November 22, 2015
Rescuers search for a missing boater in the ocean waters near Ventura Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015.
Rescuers search for a missing boater in the ocean waters near Ventura Saturday, Nov. 21, 2015.

VENTURA, Calif. (KABC) -- Authorities continued a search for a missing boater's body in the ocean waters near Ventura Saturday morning after the skiff the man was on capsized the night before.

Two men, both in their 60s, headed out to the Ventura Harbor Friday night to go lobster fishing. Their 15-foot skiff was struck by a 5-foot wave and overturned against a rock formation near Greenock Lane, which is adjacent to Marina Park.

Both men were fully clothed and attempted to swim to shore. They became separated as they neared the surf line. A resident of Greenock Lane approached one of the men who made it to shore, and that's when they noticed the other man was missing.

The resident called 911, and Ventura firefighters, along with multiple agencies, headed to the area to search for the missing boater.

Several rescue groups began the search near the shore, which was the last point of contact, and spread the search to the jetty. Helicopters from the U.S. Coast Guard and Ventura County conducted patterned searches.

A group of six ocean rescue swimmers were searching along the surf line. One of the rescuers was later bumped by a juvenile 6-foot great white shark, prompting all divers to be evacuated from the water. The rescue swimmer was not injured.

The search continued for more than two hours, but dark conditions, increasing offshore winds and the moderate surf hampered rescue efforts. After midnight, the rescue was turned over the Ventura County Sheriff's Department and the U.S. Coast Guard.

The skiff the men were on ended up washing ashore and fractured pieces scattered across the beach later that evening.

The search was deemed a recovery effort around 9 a.m. Saturday.